Fugazi, Ian Mackeye, In On The Killtaker

#tbt Fugazi / In on the Killtaker (1993)

By Randy Nieto
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Fugazi? Holy shit. Am I right? What a great fucking band. An article full of expletives wouldn’t give justice to how amazing this band was. Bridging the gap between punk, rock, and reggae, Fugazi brought the politics of music into the fold, taking steps to ensure fans would be able to afford their shows and records. Concerts were usually held at non-traditional DIY venues for $5 or $6 dollar tickets, while CD’s and LP’s are still on sale for only $10 and $13 dollars respectively from their record label, Dischord. This is a far cry from walking into a record store and having to pay $25+ to pick up a new copy of your favorite record. Music industry ideology aside, Fugazi made some of the best and most influential records of the late 80’s and early 90’s. Born from the ashes of Minor Threat and Rites of Spring, Ian Mackeye described the music he wanted to create “Like the Stooges with reggae”, which is actually a pretty great and accurate description. As a matter of fact, Fugazi surpassed that, writing music with a punk edge that still retained infectious melody in the chords and rhythm section. They pulled off vocal passion you seldom see in bands these days, and they did it without sounding trite or corny.  Headquartered in Washington D.C., influenced by locals like Bad Brains, and sometimes labeled as “Meat and Potatoes Punk”, Fugazi were a different animal from the California punk scene, which for me, at times had a cheesy, bubblegum vibe to their punk rock. I realize these #tbt posts are supposed to be about a specific album, but no single album does them justice, so I apologize if I basically sound like a kid at carnival as I write this.  My favorite album has always been “In On The Killtaker“, so check out “Public Witness Program” from that record below.

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